Tag Archive for e-scooters

Morning Links: Hope for LACBC, Paul Smith ghost bike removed already, and study on the dangers of e-scooters

One quick note before we get started.

Last Friday, I had a very pleasant talk with Communications Director Dana Variano and new Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, aka LACBC.

I won’t go into details, since everything we discussed was off the record. But we had a very frank and open discussion about the state of bicycling in general, and the state of the LACBC in general.

Suffice it to say that Kaufman recognizes that he’s got a steep learning curve to get a firm grasp on LA bike culture and street safety.

And he’s well aware of the problems facing the LACBC after drifting far too long without effective leadership.

But he’s committed to listening and improving communications, which has been a major problem as long as I’ve been involved with the coalition, as a member and former board member.

And to making the hard decisions the LACBC will need to return to being an effective voice for LA bicyclists.

I left the meeting feeling like the LACBC is in good hands.

And with a little hope for the first time in a long time.

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Disappointing news from Seal Beach, where Eric Dalton reports the ghost bike for Paul Smith has already been removed, less than three weeks after he was killed.

The popular church leader was riding on PCH at Seal Beach Blvd when he was run down from behind by an allegedly speeding driver.

At this point, there’s no word on who removed the ghost bike, or why.

But it’s heartbreaking that someone apparently didn’t think he was worth remembering for even a month.

Let alone reminding drivers of the dangers of SoCal’s killer highway.

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A new UCLA study shows e-scooters pose pretty much the same risks you might think.

Of the nearly 250 people treated by UCLA medical centers in Westwood and Santa Monica as a result of scooter injuries, the overwhelming majority of injuries were suffered by the people riding them — not pedestrians struck by them, as we are so often led to believe.

“In this study of a case series, 249 patients presented to the emergency department with injuries associated with electric scooter use during a 1-year period, with 10.8% of patients younger than 18 years,” says the January 25 paper by Tarak K. Trivedi, Charles Liu, and Anna Liza M. Antonio.

“The most common injuries were fractures (31.7%), head injuries (40.2%), and soft-tissue injuries (27.7%).”

“Only 10 riders were documented as wearing a helmet, constituting 4.4% of all riders,” the report notes. “Twelve patients (4.8%) had physician-documented intoxication or a blood alcohol level greater than 0.05%

Of course, there’s no word on the severity of the head injuries, which could have been anything from simple cuts to concussions, skull fractures or cranial bleeding.

And no way to know whether helmets could have prevented them.

Then there’s this from Forbes.

Not all of the injured patients had been riding scooters. Eleven had been hit by scooters, and five had tried to lift scooters. Another five had simply tripped over parked scooters, which is what can happen when there are Bird or Lime droppings on the sidewalk.

In other words, despite the panicked response to this study in the media, over 90% of the injuries were to the people riding them. So just like with bicyclists, even the most careless riders are a danger primarily to themselves.

Just wait until the study authors discover how many people get hurt by cars every day.

Which is not to say everyone shouldn’t ride safely, so they don’t pose a risk to themselves or anyone else.

And for chrissakes, don’t leave your damn scooter on the sidewalk, or anywhere else it can pose a danger to anyone.

Especially people with handicaps.

Thanks to David Drexler for the heads up.

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NHL All-Stars Marc-Andre Fleury and Kris Letang apparently didn’t get the memo that scooters are dangerous, arriving at the game on a pair of Lime e-scooters.

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Howard Valai forwards video of what it looks like when an LA Metro bus passes about a foot off your handlebar.

If anyone had opened the door on any of those cars, he could have seriously injured. Or worse.

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Life is cheap when you ride a bicycle.

A Colorado truck driver gets an all-too-brief 90 days behind bars, and 120 days work release, for running down a 17-year old boy from behind as he rode in a bike lane, then fleeing the scene and leaving his victim seriously injured in the street.

A speeding hit-and-run Maryland driver got just 18 months behind bars for running a red light and killing a Smithsonian IT specialist who was riding his bike to work last September.

A teenage driver walked with community service for killing a bike rider in the UK by trying to pass on a narrow country road at 60 mph — which the driver’s lawyer wrote off as a simple misjudgment. One that cost an innocent man his life.

But sometimes justice gets done.

Like the Florida driver who got over 13 years behind bars for the drunken, high-speed crash that killed a man on a bicycle.

Or the Japanese man who got a well-deserved 18 years for the road rage death of a motorbike rider, intentionally slamming into him after briefly chasing his bike. Thanks to Norm Bradwell for the link.

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I don’t even know what to make of this one.

In a video posted to an anti-bike group, an Aussie driver drove down a bike path to swear at a couple of cyclists for riding in the roadway instead of on the parallel path.

No, seriously.

Needless to say, opinions on the auto-centric site ran in favor of the foulmouthed driver, with one poster calling for him to be named Australian of the year.

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If you haven’t already, mark your calendar for International Winter Bike to Work Day on February 8th. We should be able to show a good turnout here in Southern California, where Viking Biking means you might have to put fenders on your bike.

UCLA will host a panel discussion on Transportation as a Public Health Issue this Wednesday, with Dr. Muntu Davis of the LA County Department of Public Health, Juan Matute of UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies, and LADOT General Manager Seleta Reynolds.

The LACBC will hold a historic tour of San Fernando and Pacoima Sunday morning as part of their monthly Sunday Funday rides, which promises to get you home in time for the Super Bowl.

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Local

Cycling scion and three-time national time trial champ Taylor Phinney takes his new team on a tour of the City of Angels and prove he knows it well, including stops at Bicycle Coffee and Golden Saddle Cyclery.

The editor of USC’s Daily Trojan takes a very auto-centric view of Metro’s proposed congestion pricing, saying transportation will always be a citywide struggle. Meanwhile, that Metro proposal also includes possible ride-hailing fees on Uber and Lyft, and shared-mobility fees on dockless bikeshare and e-scooters.

South Pasadena has accepted $332,000 from Metro to pay for the upcoming 626 Golden Streets open streets event through South Pas, Alhambra and San Gabriel this May.

A Santa Clarita letter writer says please leave your bikeshare bikes in the racks where you’re supposed to, rather than abandon them anywhere.

Long Beach police are looking for a serial groper on a distinctive lime green bicycle who’s attacked four women in separate assaults.

Former pro cyclist and current Long Beach Bike Ambassador Tony Cruz had his bicycle stolen last week; be on the lookout for an $8,000 Felt FR1 carbon bike with Sram e-Tap shifters and $1,300 Mavic Carbon Cosmics wheels.

State

State workers can now get reimbursed for their dockless ebike and scooter rides.

Some things never change. Nice to see the OC Register is still giving voice to ridiculously conservative anti-transit op-eds, despite layoffs and ownership changes, and a Congressional map that’s turned solid blue. The paper also says drivers probably don’t know what a sharrow is, which is probably true.

Bike advocate Roberta Walker has begun a rehab program after suffering extensive brain and spinal injuries when she was run down by a driver on PCH in Leucadia last month, while Encinitas has begun rehabbing the roadway to keep it from happening to someone else. A crowdfunding page has raised over $97,000 of the $125,000 goal to help pay her hospital and rehabilitation expenses.

Camarillo police are looking for a man in his 20s who assaulted a woman who was walking on a bike path; fortunately, she was able to fight them off.

An Oakland woman has been charged in the hit-and-run crash that critically injured a 14-year old boy, who was dragged three blocks under her car after she hit his bike; she was already on probation for a DUI conviction last fall.

As we mentioned last week, Marin transportation officials want to cut the four-year pilot program for a bike and pedestrian lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge to just six months, so they can declare it a failure and turn it back over to people in cars.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole 24 bikes from a bicycling club at a Modesto elementary school. And just the opposite for a kindhearted people who replaced 20 of them.

The CHP does more than catch speeders on the freeway. A Redding mountain biker was airlifted to a hospital after apparently breaking his leg in a fall.

National

Great. The plague of LA-based traffic safety deniers has gone national, forming the new agitprop group Keep the US Moving to spread their virtually fact-free campaign to keep our streets deadly and halt all road diets, anywhere. Thanks to Peter Flax for the tip.

Okay, now I’m impressed. Idris Elba is one of us, going for a casual bike ride with his fiancé in Hawaii.

The route has been announced for this year’s 450-mile Ride the Rockies, featuring 28,000 feet of elevation gain through the Colorado high country.

A Minnesota singer found the inspiration for her debut album in the hum of her bike chain.

She gets it. A columnist for the New York Post says drivers are getting away with murder.

New York is still trying to figure out how to deal with ebikes and scooters.

Big Apple Mayor Bill de Blasio says the city doesn’t have the resources to go after drivers who block bike lanes. Which is odd, since most of them seem to be NYPD cops.

Mississippi bicyclists ride 6.6 miles in honor of fallen cyclists.

International

Drivers and doors aren’t the only things we have to worry about. A Vancouver bicyclist was killed when he somehow collided with the friend he was riding with, and fell into the path of a truck.

Canada has cancelled plans for a $65.9 million bike path paralleling a scenic highway through the Rocky Mountains due to environmental concerns and high costs. But all those cars spewing smog are just fine, thank you.

Calgary’s new e-assist bikeshare is a huge hit, even in the winter cold and snow.

The UK could save the equivalent of over $420 million if bicycling could be made as popular in the rest of the country as it is in London.

Well deserved. A British triathlete was fined the equivalent of more than $1200 for aggressively passing a horse and rider on the curb side, colliding with them as causing the horse to bolt, injuring the rider.

The German ambassador to Pakistan went out of his way to find a locally made bike, because he wanted that Made in Pakistan stamp to show his support for the country’s people.

A bighearted South African boy broke open his own piggy bank to buy a new bicycle for a gas station attendant he befriended.

Sad news from New Zealand, where a 32-year old elite cyclist is dying of intestinal cancer, saying she should have pushed harder for a diagnosis after suffering from years of stomach pain.

A Singaporean news channel examines why the island city has yet to become a bicycling paradise, pointing a finger at the heat and rain, and a lack of safe space on the road.

Competitive Cycling

Long Beach will host this year’s Paratriathlon National Championships in June.

Cycling Tips looks at how a little known cyclist from Cuba beat the world’s best women’s riders in the Cadel Road Race.

Road.cc offers advice on how to step up from riding sportives to your first actual bike race.

The LA Times says Zwift’s new esports league is just like pro cycling, but without the turns or crashes, and with actual pro cycling teams.

Finally…

You may not have to worry about drivers on a bike path, but keep your eyes peeled for pigs. How to build a bicycle sidecar out of an empty beer keg; make it a full keg, and you’ve got a deal.

And nothing sells Danish beer like a good bike ride.

Morning Links: Don’t walk the streets of Bakersfield, Wag heads enter scooter wars, and bike hating deer

Even Buck Owens would probably think twice about walking the streets of Bakersfield these days.

The Central Valley city is the seventh most deadly city for people to walk in the US, and the only one in the top nine that’s not in Florida.

Then again, you probably don’t want to walk at all in the Bible Belt.

Surprisingly, though, Los Angeles didn’t even make the top 20.

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A new Los Angeles-based startup created by the founders of the Wag dog walking service has hit the streets of San Diego.

Jonathan and Joshua Viner are positioning Wheels as the next generation in dockless personal mobility, a cross between an e-scooter and mini-bicycle that allows the rider to be seated instead of standing.

You can even recharge your cellphone. And play your music while you’re at it.

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We may have to deal with distracted LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to worry about taking a massive header over a bike-hating deer.

Usually.

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Turns out the left lane isn’t always the fast lane.

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Local

Sahra Sulaiman writes that Leimert Park bike crew Black Kids on Bikes passed the community service torch to a younger generation of bike riders at this year’s King Day Parade.

Streetsblog says the Arroyo Seco Bike/Walk Path is damaged from the recent rains, but still passable.

Popular Mechanics recommends three affordably priced bikes from Burbank’s Pure Cycles.

Homegrown bike service company Pedal Movement will take over operation of the Long Beach Bike Share, which will be expanding into more areas of the city.

State

The Orange County physician who prescribed drugs to driver who fatally ran down Costa Mesa firefighter Mike Kreza has pled not guilty to charges of illegally prescribing opioids; drugs from the alleged Dr. Feelgood also made their way into the hands of the Borderline shooter.

An Anaheim man was killed in a suspected gang shooting while riding his bicycle Tuesday night.

Bike SD co-sponsored a one-night Holiday Lane last December, closing down a major Pacific Beach street for a carfree community celebration.

Hats off to a group of kindhearted Thousand Oaks teenagers, who are collecting 400 bicycles, as well as wheelchairs, crutches and shipping costs, for impoverished kids in Puerto Rico and Africa.

A San Luis Obispo Facebook group forms the basis of a 280 member, all female mountain biking group called SLO Dirt Girls.

Sad news from Fresno, where a bike rider was killed when a driver was briefly blinded by another car’s headlights.

Candidates for the board of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition are being challenged on whether the bike advocacy group should accept money from car companies.

The Marin transportation board wants to steal a lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge back from pedestrians and bicyclists just a tad sooner than expected, cutting a promised pilot program from four years to six months so they can give it back to motorists.

Friends can’t explain why a Marin County man was riding bike on a freeway, where he was struck and killed by at least three separate drivers as he swerved back and forth across all three traffic lanes.

National

He gets it. In a Newsweek op-ed, a GOP advisor questions why car-choked cities are banning e-scooters. More proof that common sense traffic solutions are not a partisan issue.

A new analytical tool based on publicly available cellphone data allows cities to get a more detailed picture of how many people are walking and biking, and where they’re going.

CNN recommends walking or riding a bikeshare bike to maintain a healthy lifestyle while traveling for business.

The Shift Up podcast discusses why a Denver man shuttered his bike shop, and started his own line of $800 DIY cargo bike kits.

Denver gives its Vision Zero program a passing grade, even though traffic fatalities are up in the Mile High City.

You may soon be able to get drunk and ride your bike in North Dakota. Or your horse.

They get it. A Minnesota newspaper tells readers to be a hero and don’t drive distracted.

Seriously? A Minnesota police chief is serving a one week suspension for choking a 12-year old boy he mistakenly thought was trying to steal his mountain bike, when the kid was actually just trying to pick it up after it had been knocked down. I hate bike thieves as much as anyone, but he should have been fired the moment he put his hands on the kid’s neck.

New York police are looking for a bike rider who attacked an Uber driver and his car with a U-lock, then jumped on the roof and hood when the driver attempted to get away. There’s never an excuse for violence. But you’d think the press might wonder what the driver might have done to provoke it.

Residents of New York’s West Village complain about derelict bicycles left on the sidewalks.

A New Orleans artist yarn bombed a bikeshare bike, covering everything but the wheels and pedals.

Fort Lauderdale FL is banning e-scooters during spring break, apparently preferring to jam the streets with smog belching cars than allow partying students to get around on small, clean machines.

A Miami TV station shows video of the Wheels Up, Guns Down protest in Miami that led to a white driver pulling a gun and yelling racial epithets at a group of black teenagers; the bike riders were protesting the redevelopment of a housing project. The incident is being investigated as a hate crime.

International

Road.cc tests whether the new Pinarello Nytro ebike is faster uphill than a lightweight roadie.

Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry discusses why he loves riding his Vogue Elite bicycle around London. Note to Christies — it’s called a Dutch-style bicycle, not a ladies bike.

Sad news from Columbia, where a former dean from Vassar College was killed less than two-thirds of a mile into a planned 750-mile ride through the country.

Bolivia’s famed Death Road proved aptly named for a New Zealand bike rider, who slipped off a rain-slicked roadway and down a cliff while on a mountain bike tour with his fiancée.

Victoria, British Columbia plans to sacrifice a tree in one of the city’s busiest intersections to make room for bike lanes and a scramble crosswalk; urban forest advocates say not so fast.

For a monthly fee, a Dutch startup provides a working transportation bike and handles all the maintenance and repairs.

The most shocking thing about this video of a Swiss synchronized cycling team isn’t their amazing performance, it’s that AOL is still around.

National Geographic looks at the new 1,500-mile bike path that will connect cities and towns in eight Balkan countries when it’s completed. Thanks to the Previn Report for the heads-up.

A 27-year old Afghan man is trying to improve children’s literacy by riding his bike across the country handing out free books.

A homeless Australian man pled guilty to the hit-and-run death of a bicycling Dutch tourist; he was speeding at twice the speed limit in a stolen car on his way to buy drugs when he crashed the car.

Finally…

Now you, too, can be a virtual pro cyclist. Cars burst into flames, bikes aren’t supposed to.

And maybe there’s a better place they could have put this.

Just saying.

Morning Links: Bighearted San Jose cops, shredding mountain bike firefighter, and e-scooter dog cruelty

Somehow I lost this one on my desktop over the holidays.

Robert Leone forwards news of bighearted San Jose cops who pitched in to buy a new bicycle for their favorite shoe shine person, after his was damaged when he was hit by a car before Thanksgiving.

Thanks and apologies to Robert Leone for the delay in posting this one.

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No, that’s not a professional mountain biker. It’s an Orange County firefighter.

And officially one of the nation’s fastest non-pro downhill racers.

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Some people shouldn’t be allowed to have dogs.

Or ride scooters.

Bakersfield police are looking for a woman who was caught on video dragging a dog behind an e-scooter going an estimated 15 mph.

Let’s hope they find her, and take both of them away. Permanently.

And yes, the video is just as disturbing as it says.

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Local

After advocates managed to beat back an anti-road diet motion from traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving, the L.A. Neighborhood Council Coalition approved a more neutral motion calling for community input on road diets. But as Streetsblog’s Joe Linton points out, no one demands community engagement for most driver-friendly changes.

Downtown News says the Los Angeles River Bike Path Gap Closure Project has the potential to be a key component in a regional bike network, but with a gasp-inducing $365 million price tag and an overly long timeline.

More mass insanity, as speed limits go up in Westwood and Century City, including the popular bike route Ohio Ave.

Metro is now offering Pedal Perks to bikeshare members; 50 rides will get you a Metro Bike Share T-shirt.

A new app allows you to plan your trip by comparing transit, bikeshare, ride-hailing and carpooling for 15 cities around the world, including Los Angeles.

The Santa Clarita Valley is peppered with a network of bike and walking paths to take users back to nature, thanks in part to the efforts of the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition, the LACBC’s neighborhood chapter for the area.

State

A CHP officer says police are more likely to ticket bike riders under 18 for not wearing a helmet, now that it’s a fix-it ticket rather than a traffic fine.

All those new bike lanes in San Luis Obispo must be doing some good, with bicycle crashes down to their lowest level in the 20 years the city has been keeping track.

The rich get richer. An outgoing San Francisco city supervisor unveiled yet another protected bike lane in the City by the Bay on her last day in office.

A San Francisco bike rider got stuck with a $20,000 bill from the city’s largest hospital following a bike crash, learning the hard way that the hospital named after Mark Zuckerberg is out-of-network for everyone.

A Marin paper says a new study shows too many people on bikes and on foot are getting hit by motorists, and calls on everyone to pay attention and play by the rules.

National

Outside looks at the rise of e-mountain bikes, saying the quality keeps getting better, despite the vitriol they elicit. Especially if you’ve got ten grand or more to spend on one.

The Peloton community raised over $37,000 for a man suffering from cancer, after his wife posted on Facebook asking if anyone wanted to buy hers to help pay for her treatment.

Students at the University of Arkansas are about to get a new cycle track and sidewalks leading through campus.

This is who we share the roads with. A Michigan Uber driver has pled guilty to shooting eight people between fares, killing six.

A Pittsburgh letter writer says bike riders should be subsidized, not taxed, because they reduce overall car usage.

An Adirondack, New York newspaper thanks the state’s governor for finishing the 34-mile rail-to-trail Adirondack Rail Trail.

There’s a special place in hell for the hit-and-run driver who ran down a New Jersey man delivering food to the homeless on his bicycle, leaving hm to die alone in the street.

International

Road.cc looks at six of the best bike locks to help keep your bike from getting stolen.

Havana’s new docked bikeshare system is turning out to be more popular than expected, even with just 60 bicycles.

A Winnipeg city counselor says screw the bike lanes, clear snow off the roads and sidewalks first.

I want to be like him when I grow up, too. A bighearted Montreal man anonymously gave over 1,700 bicycles to disadvantaged kids over the last 34 years of his life, earning the nickname the Bike Man; it was only after his death that his true identity finally came out.

Prince Charles is one of us. Or at least he was during his college days.

British foldie bikemaker Brompton isn’t taking chances, stockpiling the equivalent of nearly $1.3 million in parts in case a “shit hits the fan” Brexit disaster strikes, which is looking more likely every day.

Now that’s more like it. Police in an English city have opened a web portal allowing people to submit bike and dashcam videos and still photos showing traffic violations. It would take a law change to allow police to use videos and photos in California. And it should be.

No, using a motor vehicle to intentionally knock someone off their bike isn’t a prank, it’s assault with a deadly weapon.

Even Azerbaijan is becoming bike friendly.

Thor is one of us. Or at least the actor who plays him, as Chris Hemsworth goes for a shirtless bike ride with his family in their Australian hometown.

Competitive Cycling

USA Cycling has a new CEO after hiring the former head of New Balance; he’s one of us, too.

New Paralympics individual pursuit champ Clara Brown won her title eleven years after she was paralyzed from the neck down, and just five months after taking up track cycling.

Finally…

If you’re going to make your getaway by bicycle, make sure you’re faster than the bike cop chasing you. No, the correct usage of a kid’s bike is not smashing the windshield of the person you’re arguing with.

And now you can have your very own bike airbag, just like all the cool people in cars (scroll down).

Morning Links: Lime wins LA approvals, other cities fight climate change while LA does nothing, and snipping Ottolock

Lime has become the second company to win official approval to deploy scooters in the City of Los Angeles. 

The company follows Uber-owned JUMP, which received its permit a month ago

However, the hopes of many Angelenos that Lime would bring its dockless ebikes to the streets of LA may remain unfulfilled, at least for now. 

This is the press release Lime sent out yesterday announcing the approval

Scooter photo from Lime website.

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Leave it to Minnesotans to show LA’s supposedly progressive leaders how to deal with traffic and climate change.  

As part of the city’s new housing and transportation plan, Minneapolis is eliminating parking minimums throughout the city

But that’s just the beginning. 

The plan calls for discouraging new surface parking lots, and prohibits new gas stations and drive-throughs. It also bans auto-oriented land use, such as auto repair shops, near transit stations, along with even stricter parking restrictions.

And in a move that would send Los Angeles NIMBYs running to their lawyers, it calls for increased density near traffic, and allows triplex apartments in every neighborhood — even those currently zoned for single family homes. 

The goal is to — wait for it — cut the number of local driving trips by 40%, while reducing emissions 80% in the next 30 years.

Compare that to the current Los Angeles policy, which is to hope that self-driving electric cars will somehow magically save us from having to make any tough choices. 

Good luck with that. 

These are all actions LA should take as quickly as possible, since California is already failing to meet its climate change goals.

And would, if the actions of our “progressive” leaders equalled their pro-environment, anti-climate change words. 

Instead, they’ll continue to fiddle while Rome burns in fear of further aggravating already angry drivers, and the dwindling number of homeowners who can actually afford a million-dollar single family starter home. 

Never mind making the hard choices the city, and our world, demand. 

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A little closer to home, Sacramento followed the Minneapolis model by voting to ban new gas stations, drive-through restaurants and auto repair shops within a quarter mile of light rail stations, while requiring a conditional use permit with a half mile. 

The city will also eliminate off-street parking requirements within a quarter mile, and loosen restrictions in a half-mile radius around transit stations. 

Meanwhile, here in Los Angeles, 

<crickets>

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Evidently, the popular Kickstarter sensation the Ottolock may be pretty and convenient, but may not protect your bike from thieves

In fact, it can apparently be cut through in just seconds. 

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It may not be the Twelve Days of Christmas yet.

But it is first day of the last 12 days of the 4th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive, as we begin the final countdown on our year-end fundraiser!

Please take a few moments to join the 34 others who’ve already given their hard-earned money to support SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy, and help keep this site coming your way every day.

You can donate via PayPal, or through Zelle with the banking app that’s already on your phone, using the email address you’ll find on this link.

Anything you can give helps, and is truly and deeply appreciated, no matter how large or small. 

Or if you own a business, consider buying an ad on BikinginLA to show your support, while you spread your message to thousands of bike riders in Southern California and around the world. Then write off the full cost on your taxes next year!

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Local

LA County approved 58 miles of multi-use, hiking, mountain-biking and equestrian trails in the Santa Susana Mountains near Santa Clarita. 

Bicycling looks at the international manhunt that belatedly brought Andrea Dorothy Chan Reyes to justice in the hit-and-run death of Agustin Rodriguez, Jr. as he rode to work in Whittier nearly two years ago. 

CiclaValley continues his tale of ‘cross crashes and victory

State

San Diego bike advocates cautiously support the creation of a new mobility board that combines the previous bicycle advisory and parking advisory boards. Yes, parking.  

The planned Complete Streets makeover of San Francisco’s Market Street gets a $15 million infusion from the feds

Marin residents debate whether to allow ebikes on the trails recognized as the birthplace of mountain biking, as bike riders explain how the bikes allowed them to return to the activity they love, despite advancing age, illness and injuries. The local paper sort ofendorses approving ebikes, while saying safety is paramount

Napa bicyclists are giving back with their time and money to help maintain the Napa Valley Vine Trail.

National

People For Bikes calls for mobility for all

Steve Carell is one of us, describing his “fun fan encounter” with the woman who ran him down from behind on his bike. Eighty-eight-year old Gene Hackman is one of us, too.

Clean Technica says urban planners should ignore the reactionary anti-ebike steps taken by Israel and New York, because ebikes offer strong benefits to cities and counties

Pink Bike considers the future of bike industry trade shows in a wake of Interbike’s announcement it won’t hold a show in 2019. Or maybe ever. 

No surprise here. Oregon’s $15 tax on the sale of all new bicycles over $200 is bringing in far less revenue than expected, collecting less than half of the projected $2.1 million

This is why people continue to die on our streets. After a 92-year old holocaust survivor was killed by an Oregon motorist, the local police rushed to blame the victim and exonerate the driver.

The Seattle Times endorses plans to complete the missing link in a 20-mile bike trail with a protected bike lane in the public right-of-way, despite alternative facts from area business owners. 

A Washington man who helped preserve the area’s last undeveloped natural space will be honored with a permanent memorial where he died after suffering an aneurism while mountain biking. 

The usual debate over bike lanes and road diets rears its ugly head in Colorado Springs CO, as supporters and opponents confront the topic at a city council meeting

‘Tis the season. Residents at a Wisconsin retirement home received two three-wheeled pedicabs from the Cycling Without Age program as an early holiday present. 

Boston bike riders want to city to cancel plans to remove flex posts that mark a protected bike lane on a bridge over the Charles River; the city plans to take them out to make it easier to salt and plow the bridge for motorists. 

The usual battle over who owns the streets is heating up in Harrisburg PA, as the city installs a number of projects intended to slow traffic and give more space back to local residents, bicyclists and pedestrians. 

International

A lawyer and former paramedic describes what it’s like to be on the receiving end of emergency treatment after experiencing the dreaded death wobble while descending on his bike at 40 mph. 

Not only did the authors of Vancouver’s Modacity bring their own Christmas tree home by bicycle, they’re collecting photos of other people around the world doing the same thing

Victoria, British Columbia asks the court to dismiss a lawsuit from the Canadian Federation of the Blind alleging that the design of the city’s protected bike lanes violate the human rights of sightless people. 

London plans to remove parking to make room for the first of the city’s cycle superhighways in South London.  

No bias here. A British paper automatically concludes a bike rider was at fault in a road rage dispute with a London cab driver who accused him of riding off after crashing into a pedestrian. From what I can see, they both come off as a pair of total jerks

The UK’s Cycling magazine offersa reminder that booze and bicycling don’t mix

Oslo crowdsources traffic data using children biking and walking to school. And discovers it works better than expected. 

Bikeshare comes to the streets of Tehran

Syrian social movement has gotten over 4,000 women on bicycles, despite harassing catcalls and a country disrupted by civil war. 

This is the cost of traffic violence. The curator of South Africa’s world-famous Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden died after he was hit by a car while riding his bike earlier this month. 

A pair of ill-prepared roadies take part in The Pioneer trail race in New Zealand, part of the grueling Cape Series. 

No shit. The widow of an Australian bicyclist complains about the inadequate charges against a road raging driver who caused his death after getting out of his car to confront him; he faces a maximum of a lousy two years for three traffic offenses. 

Competitive Cycling

In a surprise announcement, British broadcaster Sky is pulling the plug on its sponsorship of Team Sky after next season, leaving the future of the cycling’s most dominant team up in the air.  Meanwhile, the BBC asks why now and what’s next?

As Sky leaves, McLaren moves in. The English Formula One giant will become half owner of Vincenzo Nibali’s Bahrain-Merida team.

Rouleur continues its interview with cycling great Bernard Hinault

Finally…

Forget Rapha; now you can wear Peter Sagan.  Bicycling’s most WTF moments of 2018.

And now you’ll be able to get a safety warning from the driverless car that’s about to run you down. 

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Thanks to Michael W for his generous donation to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive to help keep this site coming to your screen every morning! 

Morning Links: Run down by e-scooter, scooters invade the SFV, and bicycling keeps your heart young — literally

Last night it was my turn.

I’ve seen and heard countless comments from people complaining about getting hit by e-scooters over the last year. In fact, two people in my building have been injured in collisions with scooter riders in the past few months. 

I almost joined them last night.  

The Corgi and I were walking on the sidewalk in a residential section of Hollywood Blvd when I saw three adult men on scooters coming up from behind. So we moved over to the grass to give them room, and they passed without incident.

But several seconds later, after we moved back onto the sidewalk, something slammed into me from behind with no warning.

I was still trying to figure out what the hell happened when I saw a man hurry to get back on his scooter and rush away, without a single word of apology or even a glance back to see if we were okay. 

Fortunately, neither one of us were seriously injured, though my back hurts everywhere as I write this several hours later. And I suspect I’m going to be pretty immobile for the next few days.

And he’s lucky he didn’t hit the Corgi, or Lime would need a proctologist to get their scooter back.

I know there are people think e-scooters should be banned because of incidents like this. 

But it wasn’t Lime who a) illegally rode on a residential sidewalk, b) had the throttle wide open trying to catch up to his friends, and c) tried to squeeze past us without a single word of warning.

E-scooters, like bicycles and cars, are just tools. 

And while steps can be taken to improve their safety, I don’t know any way of ensuring that jerks like that aren’t allowed to use them. 

After all, it hasn’t worked with motor vehicles yet. And probably never will, until we take humans out of the equation. 

One quick reminder: You’re required to stop and render aid, and exchange ID, after any crash, whether in a car, on a bike or riding an e-scooter. Anyone who fails to do so can be charged with hit-and-run — besides being a total schmuck.

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Speaking of e-scooters, they’re about to make their first big push into the San Fernando Valley

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Here’s one more reason to ride a bike. 

NPR reports that seniors who exercise regularly can have hearts that look 30 years younger

And yes, ped-assist ebikes count, too.

So I can safely say that after a lifetime of bicycling, the rest of me may be reaching its expiration date, but my heart can still hit run circles around hearts half its age. 

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It’s Day 20 of the 4th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

If you haven’t donated yet to support SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy, please give today to BikinginLA coming your screen every morning.

You can donate in just moments via PayPal, or through Zelle with the banking app that’s already on your phone, and the email address on this link.

Anything you can give helps, and is truly and deeply appreciated, no matter how large or small. 

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Local

As expected, the LA city council voted to raise speed limits on over 100 miles of surface streets throughout the city so police can legally use speed guns to enforce the new limits, as required by California’s deadly 85th Percentile Law. Seriously, this law has to be changed. Because Vision Zero is nothing but a bunch of pretty platitudes if we keep increasing speeds to ever more dangerous levels

This is why people keep dying on our streets. In Los Angeles, you can flee the scene after killing a pedestrian with your car — even a successful musician — and walk away with nothing more than probation.  

Congratulations to CiclaValley, who’s so excited about his recent cyclocross win he had to break the story into multiple parts.  

State

The mayor of Encinitas calls for speeding up the timeline for safety improvements on the North Coast Highway following the crash that critically injured bike and pedestrian advocate Roberta Walker.  

A hard-hitting Streetsblog editorial says a debate over a Complete Streets makeover of an Oakland street boils down to whether people in cars are worth more than everyone else.

National

According to a new report from the US Department of Transportation, the problem isn’t that traffic lanes are too small, it’s that fire trucks and other heavy vehicles are too damn big, saying smaller trucks could save lives while doing the job just as well. 

Fast Company relates five steps most cities go through to make themselves better, including stop doing the wrong things, and stop doing the wrong things better. LA is still stuck on that first step. Maybe permanently.   

new report from the Seattle DOT shows driving, bike riding and walking are down, while transit use and carpooling is up.  On the other hand, bike safety is improving, as Seattle bicycling deaths and injuries are down for the year.

An Idaho town is developing bikepacking trails of up to 180 miles to provide shorter alternatives to the state’s premier 600-mile adventure cycling route. 

Now that’s more like it. A Nebraska judge sentenced a driver to 12 to 14 years for the drunken crash that killed a bike rider, and revoked his driver’s license for 15 years. Hopefully, the clock on his license won’t start counting until after he gets out

Atlanta has the same problem Los Angeles has, as streets designed for speed are leading to an increase in bicycling and pedestrian deaths

Candidates for Tampa mayor agree that street safety must be improved for bike riders and pedestrians

International

New figures from the World Health Organization show worldwide traffic deaths rose to around 1.35 million, with people traveling by foot or bicycle making up overt a quarter of those deaths. 

Road.cc explains everything you need to know about MIPS helmets

After a London butcher shop switched from delivery vans to e-cargo bikes, they reduced delivery times and expenses, and cut carbon emissions — while improving the health of their delivery people. 

Authorities in Liverpool, England released new images to show what a Complete Street makeover of a major street would look like — but removed any trace of a bike lane from the pictures

The Polish host city for the UN’s climate change talks now has a new bicycle mayor.  

lack of cycle tracks and safe bike parking keeps people in an Indian city from bicycling — and the cleaner air that would come with it. Sort of like just about everywhere else.

An Australian writer says male cyclists need to lose the attitude and encourage women riders like her

Not surprisingly, Japanese bicyclists have largely shunned a shuttle service that ferries bike riders across a bridge where bicycles are banned. 

Competitive Cycling

The new Continental cycling team sponsored by America’s other ex-Tour de France winner will be called Floyd’s Pro Cycling, after Canada denied permission to name the team after cannabis purveyor Floyd’s of Leadville.

Interesting move by the organizers of the four-stage Colorado Classic bike race, which is dropping the men’s race to focus solely on the women’s race going forward; the race will be the only standalone women’s-only bike race on the UCI and USA Cycling Pro Road Tour calendars.

VeloNews looks at how Ellen Noble overcame crippling anxiety attacks to become America’s top cyclocross racer this year.

Possibly the most successful mountain biker of all time, 45-year old Norwegian cyclist Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjå, decides to call it a career

Finally…

If you’re riding drunk, try not to fall off your bike— or crashing it when you try to get back on. When chasing volcanoes isn’t thrilling enough, open a bike shop.  

And what’s the point of being a bike snob if you’re just going to like stuff?

Morning Links: CSUN dean looks to ban skateboards, bikes and scooters from campus, and bike election results

CSUN skateboard users may soon find themselves on double-secret probation.

Like the Deltas in Animal House, skateboards are being targeted by a college dean who apparently wants them booted off campus.

And bicycles and scooters, too.

Dr. Jerry Stinner, the dean of the College of Science and Mathematics at California State University Northridge, writes in an email to faculty members that he was recently knocked down by someone on a skateboard.

Which is a bad thing.

And for which the person responsible should be held accountable. Not everyone who tries to get around the CSUN campus by any means other than walking or driving.

Just wait until someone tells him about cars, and the dangers they pose to students and faculty on campus.

Although the image of a college dean pointing a speed gun at unsuspecting students making their way across the massive campus, undoubtedly from his hidden vantage point, is pretty laughable.

But for someone who heads up the mathematics department, he doesn’t seem to have a solid grasp on statistics and polling. His survey questions are clearly slanted to elicit an anti-skateboard/bike/scooter response, rather than any clear gauge of actual attitudes.

Maybe he could have one of those statistics professors draft an actual, unbiased poll that could go out to everyone, including students.

Let’s hope CSUN has some Deltas of their own who are willing to throw a toga party or two to fight injustice.

And show Dean Stinner, and the rest of the CSUN administration, just how ridiculous this is.

Or the next time a pedestrian bumps into him, he may try to ban walking.

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Streetsblog rounds up the transportation-related issues on California ballots in Tuesday’s election, saying Democratic super-majorities in the state Senate and Assembly bode well for climate change issues and a balanced transportation system.

Meanwhile, Bicycle Retailer catches up with bike-related elections around the US, including the failure of California’s Prop 6. The article notes that Madeleine Dean, wife of the CEO of Performance Bicycle parent company Advanced Sports Enterprises, was elected to represent Pennsylvania in Congress, which should give a good voice for people on bikes.

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Local

Sandra Marie Wicksted was due in court today to enter a plea in the murder of fallen bicyclist Leslie Pray, and the attempted murder of four other riders, in Claremont last Saturday. However, the hearing was delayed until Friday.

Metro Bike is bringing ebike bikeshare to Union Station in DTLA as part of a pilot program before rolling them out throughout the county.

Three public meetings will be held to discuss closing the eight-mile long gap in the LA River bike path from Elysian Valley to Vernon; the first meeting will take place at 6 pm tonight at Metro Headquarters in DTLA. If you’ve ever tried to make it through that gap section on surface streets, you know how badly the closure is needed.

The Santa Monica Daily Press looks at SaMo’s efforts to establish scooter and bikeshare parking on the streets; doing that throughout the LA area could eliminate complaints about haphazardly parked and abandoned scooters. Although the first thing that jumped out at me was not the parking space in front, but the stripped bike locked to a rack in the background.

 

State

The CEO of ebike maker Pedego is now officially one of Orange County’s most influential people.

A San Diego exhibition, titled I Love to Ride My Bicycle, explores the relationship between artists and their bicycles.

Ventura’s Channel Islands Bike Club will host a presentation on international bicycle tourism tonight, following an ebike demo last month.

More protected bike lanes are sprouting up on the streets of Los Altos.

Interesting study from San Francisco on bicycling’s gender gap, and what prevents women from taking environmental action.

 

National

Bike Index talks with the Russian developer of a free Android app for the bike registration service.

Bike Snob says stop dooring people, already. Bad enough that the illustration shows motorists hitting a bike rider and pedestrian with their doors; dooring a corgi is just going too damn far.

Ford went shopping, and scooped up e-scooter provider Spin for a mere $40 million.; the carmaker also runs San Francisco’s bikeshare program.

Portland’s newly elected city commissioner envisions a carfree future centered on the ability to have bicycles, and free and fast public transit.

Utah will once again consider an Idaho stop law, allowing bike riders to treat stop signs as yields. Which is only fair, since most drivers don’t come to a full stop, either.

A Montana couple rides a singletrack trail in the Bitterroot Mountains that they fear could disappear in the next few years.

A Dallas website says the city may only have 10.4 miles of bike lanes, but it does have some lovely paths and trails.

A New York letter writer says bicycling “idiots” are a menace to “the 99% of New Yorkers” who don’t ride bikes, and police should shred lawbreaking riders on the spot (second item). I’m oaky with that, as long as the same policy applies to people in cars, as well.

This is also the cost of traffic violence. A driver charged with killing the four-year old daughter of a Tony Award-winning actress and another one-year old boy in a crosswalk while they were in a crosswalk has killed herself. Knowing you took an innocent life would be a damn hard thing to live with for the rest of your life.

DC’s mayor tells the postal service, FedEx and UPS to stop parking in bike lanes. Good luck with that.

A Baltimore woman has made a career out of teaching kids how to ride a bicycle.

Florida is building a 2.4-mile, $2.6 million dollar bike path to close the final gap in a 100-mile trail connecting two counties, part of what will eventually be a 250-mile trail across the state.

 

International

London’s Sun newspaper asks what’s the point of lowering more speed limits to 20 mph when most drivers ignore it anyway — up to 94% during early morning hours. In that case, we might as well get rid of stop signs, legalize drunk and distracted driving and remove turn signals from cars, since many drivers ignore those laws, too.

Cellphone data from a British delivery service proves that bicycles really do move through an urban environment faster than motor vehicles.

A UK bicycling magazine says the Netherlands is ahead of the game once again by proposing to ban cellphone use while riding a bicycle.

Here’s a couple more for your bike bucket list. Cycling Weekly suggests that Madeira, Portugal may be the ultimate adventure cycling destination. Unless you’d prefer a bike tour through Hemingway’s Spain.

No bias here. An Israeli writer says forget the drunk driver, let’s blame the ebike-riding victim because some people don’t ride them safely.

 

Finally…

Your next bike light could be powered by magnets. This is what happens when you put a new bike path between two shooting ranges.

And Homer Simpson is definitely not one of us. Especially when he knocks a bike rider down as a result of donut-distracted driving .

Thanks to Steve for the heads-up.

 

Morning Links: New hope for Temple Street, more dangerous drivers, and Bird & SoCal cities sued over scooters

There may be hope for Temple Street yet.

Eight months after Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell pulled the plug on the long planned and badly needed Complete Streets makeover of Temple in the wake of the Playa del Rey disaster — and even longer after anti-bike Councilmember Gil Cedillo killed his part of the project — local residents haven’t given up the fight.

A pair of meetings will be held tonight and tomorrow to discuss what can be done on the dangerous arterial. And possibly even resurrect the Temple Street Compete Streets project.

If you live, work, ride or walk anywhere near Temple, you owe it to yourself to attend at least one of them.

Cedillo may be a lost cause, but it could still be possible to convince O’Farrel to change his mind if we make enough noise.

Thanks to Derrick Paul for the heads-up and the photo.

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What the hell is wrong with people?

Just a day after Claremont’s Leslie Pray was allegedly murdered by a driver who internationally ran into her, a road raging San Antonio TX driver tried to do the same thing, using his car as a weapon in an attempt to run down three bike riders he’d been arguing with.

Fortunately, he only hit a fire hydrant.

But now faces three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. And a long vacation in a Texas prison.

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Apparently, it’s not enough for some people to just run down one bike rider.

Florida residents want speed limits lowered and a traffic signal installed on the street where four bicyclists were critically injured by a 91-year old driver; two victims remain in serious to critical condition.

And a South African hit-and-run driver crashed into one bike rider on a club ride, sending him falling into the others and ended up injuring five bicyclists.

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Australia’s bike community is in morning after a leading bike advocate was killed in a collision with an SUV driver.

Cam Frewer had helped introduce Queensland’s equivalent of the three-foot passing law and fought for the rights of riders.

Frewer had been the subject of numerous death threats for his advocacy work raises a question of whether the crash was an accident.

Meanwhile, an anti-bike drivers group says it’s not their fault if some bike rider gets himself killed.

Thanks to Frank Lehnerz for the tip.

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More e-scooters in the news.

First Bird sued Beverly Hills for banning scooters, now a wheelchair-bound woman is suing Bird, Beverly Hills, Los Angeles and Santa Monica in a proposed class action, claiming the scooters block sidewalks and endanger handicapped people — even though they can’t be legally used in Beverly Hills.

There’s no love for scooters in the City of Brotherly Love, as Philadelphia gives Lime and Bird the bird after discovering motorized scooters are not street legal in Pennsylvania.

Last but not least, Greensboro SC gets on the scooter banning bandwagon.

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Local

Forget the Olympics; Los Angeles beat out Budapest as host of the first ever World Urban Games next September, with events including BMX freestyle cycling; if the city doesn’t fall on its face, LA could host the 2021 games, as well.

An Op-Ed in the LA Times says what’s lacking on Los Angeles streets is manners. Thanks to Chris Giza for the link.

Over 100 people turned out for the ghost bike ceremony honoring alleged murder victim Leslie Pray in Claremont last night; her partner called Pray the kindest and most gentle person she’d ever known.

CiclaValley rides with around 50 other cyclists in honor of bicyclist Dedrick Kon, who died recently of complications from a car crash while driving at the beginning of the year.

 

State

Hard-hitting piece from the OC Register’s David Whiting, who says maybe the death of Costa Mesa fire fighter Mike Kreza will serve as a wakeup call to end SoCal’s culture of distracted driving. Although there’s been no report that the allegedly stoned driver was distracted, as well.

Work has begun to close a gap in the Bay Area’s Bay Trail between Berkeley and Albany; when completed, the trail will extend 350 mile around the San Francisco Bay, with another 150 miles to go. Nothing like that exists in SoCal; the closest thing would be the LA River bike path, which will extend 57 miles when and if it’s ever finished; San Diego is finishing work on a 27-mile path around the bay. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the tip.

 

National

A GM fan site belatedly discovers that bike riders weren’t great fans of the recent GMC truck commercial suggesting bike riders should get a real truck.

A Mesa AZ driver says he nearly killed someone on a bike because the rider didn’t have any lights or reflectors.

A new bike lane was designed to keep bike riders and drivers from crossing paths on a busy Chicago street. But doesn’t work because drivers won’t stop driving in the bike lane and bicyclists won’t stop for the stop sign. Yet another reminder that traffic planners need to keep human nature in mind when designing anything — which is the very definition of Vision Zero.

A Chicago weekly offers advice for men on how not to be a total jerk to women walking, biking or using transit.

New Hampshire residents say a new bollard-protected bike lane has made a once-safe street more dangerous. As well as heartbreakingly unaesthetic, according to one woman.

New York’s refusal to install a long-sought protected bike lane on one street leads some people to call plans for a painted bike lane a death trap.

 

International

Tech Radar looks at the next generation of bike tech.

According to an Ottawa, Canada defense lawyer, his dump truck driver client wasn’t negligent, even though he failed to signal before fatally right-hooking a woman on a bike.

A new film follows a Montreal DJ who bought a bike on a whim, and set off on an attempt to set a new world record for the longest continuous fixie ride, over 11,000 miles through the Canadian arctic.

Life is cheap and getting cheaper in the UK, where a driver saw his sentence for slamming into three bike riders cut from 45 months to just three years.

A five-day Israeli fundraising ride brought in a record $3.5 million for a pediatric children’s hospital; Madonna, Cher, Michael Bublé and Kathleen Turner saw the riders off, one third of whom came from the US.

South African bicyclists ride in honor of a 68-year old rider who was robbed and fatally stabbed by thieves who took his bike and cellphone. Proof that dangerous drivers aren’t the only risk that riders face in some places.

An Aukland, New Zealand bike advocate says the city is turning into a bicycling city, and riders need a seat at the top table.

A group of Australian riders are retracing the route of a bike-riding Aussie infantry troop across Europe’s Western Front during World War 1.

A writer for London’s Evening Standard takes a bikepacking tour from Phnom Penh to Laos.

 

Competitive Cycling

Alejandro Valverde insists he never tested positive for doping, despite serving a two-year ban for his connections to the Spain’s Operation Puerto investigation.

Bradley Wiggins says he would have had more rights if he was on trial for murder, instead of under investigation for suspected doping before being cleared.

A Saskatoon, Canada cyclist smashed the record for the 24 Hour World Time Trial Championships held in the California desert by riding 456 miles, beating the existing record by nearly 25 miles; she said afterwards she didn’t know how far she could go.

 

Finally…

Traffic calming beats deploying your middle finger. Mountain biking while very high in Kathmandu.

And few things go better with bicycling than LA’s best donuts.

 

Morning Links: E-scooters on fire, free bikeshare and scooter rides on Election Day, and no good guys in Aussie video

Are we tired of talking about e-scooters yet?

That Bird or Lime e-scooter you rode — or maybe dodged? That was a Segway.

Never mind falling off, Lime is pulling some of their e-scooters from Los Angeles, San Diego and Lake Tahoe because the batteries could catch fire.

………

Speaking of Lime, the company will be offering free e-scooters and dockless bikeshare rentals on Election Day next week. Thanks to Baz for the link.

And you can Bike the Vote with Metro, as Metro Bike will join bikeshare operators around the US in offering free rides on Tuesday, as well as free bus and train rides.

Meanwhile, Metro Bike is offering a chance to win a free $200 gift card for participating in their annual survey.

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Sometimes there aren’t any good guys.

After a video went viral showing a driver sideswipe an Aussie bicyclist, then get out of his car and toss his bike into the bushes, both men ended up in front of a judge.

The guy on the bike got probation and a letter of apology after admitting he keyed the driver’s car before the crash shown in the video.

Not to mention doxing him by posting his name, address and phone number online.

The driver, who was already on probation, had four other charges dismissed after copping a plea to recklessly causing injury, and got off with a $1,000 fine and court costs.

Still unanswered is what the hell the driver did to piss the bicyclist off in the first place.

Because people on bikes hardly ever just key cars at random.

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Local

Just weeks after writing about the dangers of biking in Los Angeles, and on Spring Street in particular, KPCC and LAist journalist Leo Duran nearly got hit by a red light running driver while attempting to cross on the new bike signal.

Los Angeles plans to use eminent domain to acquire the land needed for a pedestrian bridge over the LA River connecting Cypress Park and Frogtown after reaching an impasse with a developer who wants to build on the land, even though it’s in the flood plain.

Another bike event is scheduled for this weekend, as CICLE and Metro are hosting a BEST Ride to tour Scott Froschaur’s The Word on the Street public art project.

A police website profiles Pasadena’s newly reformed Neighborhood Action Team bike cop unit; officers weren’t required to know how to ride a bike when they joined, but had to learn how to fall.

 

State

The CHP is asking for donations of bike lights and reflective gear to distribute to people in Modesto who can’t afford to get their own. Although it would be nice if they didn’t blame bicyclists and pedestrians for causing most crashes.

Formerly Scotts Valley-based Fox Factory will say hasta la vista to California by moving their HQ to Georgia, and transferring the bike products division to Reno.

Good story from a Redwood City high school newspaper about the city’s new protected bike lane, and how it could encourage more people to ride. Seriously, someone should tell the kid who wrote it that he’s got a great future in the news business.

A Bay Area man describes the day his heart short-circuited while he was riding, pedaling up to the ER with his pulse pounding at 215 beats a minute. Meanwhile, VeloNews examines the effect endurance sports has on your heart.

 

National

Outside considers those vital beer and candy pairings for your leftover Halloween treats.

Bike Snob wants to make the roads safer by making driving dangerous again.

Bicycling offers five recovery tips.

This is who we share the roads with. A Portland driver was taken into custody for purposely driving into protesters outside the county courthouse.

This is who we share the roads with, part 2. A pair of Portland business owners apparently think it’s okay to run over people with their cars. Or maybe funny, which is worse.

Tacoma WA is finishing the final link on a 15-mile bike path that will give riders a safe crosstown route for the first time. Which is exactly what we need in Los Angeles. And for which there are no current plans.

A writer for a Texas A&M university paper describes a series of wildcat Midnight Crits in San Antonio, saying it’s only for the daring.

Dallas will open up 20 miles of streets on Saturday for their second annual open streets event.

They get it. The prestigious Mayo Clinic is installing 200 bike racks around Rochester, Minnesota in an effort to get more people riding.

Tragic news from Indiana, where a nine-year old girl and her six-year old brothers were killed when a pickup driver ignored the stop sign and warning lights on the bus, and slammed into them as they crossed the street; the girl had stepped in front of her brothers in a vain effort to protect them. The 24-year old woman behind the wheel now faces three counts of negligent homicide. Seriously, this is why drivers are supposed to stop for a school bus, but often don’t. And yes, bike riders are supposed to stop, too.

Baltimore’s new Complete Streets ordinance is attempting to build racial equity into the law.

Forget the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s tests on bike helmets. If you really want to know if a helmet will protect you in a crash, look to studies from the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab, which go far beyond CPSC standards to see how they hold up under tests that simulate real world conditions.

 

International

Clean Technica blames physics for the rising rate of injuries and fatalities involving ebikes — but fails to take their increasing popularity into account. Never mind that they fail to differentiate between high speed throttle-controlled bikes, and the more common — and significantly slower — ped-assist bikes.

This is who we share the roads with, part three. Prosecutors argued that an Ottawa driver was at best “willfully unaware” that he hit and killed a bike rider after driving home from his brother’s wedding at 4:30 am, and having been awake for 22 hours. Thanks to Stephen Katz for the heads-up.

Caught on video: A Kiwi bike rider is lucky to avoid a crash as a delivery driver swerves directly into her.

Australia’s largest bike advocacy group is calling for a repeal of the country’s law requiring bike helmets, at least for riders on sidewalks and offroad paths.

 

Competitive Cycling

An Olympic track cyclist decides to ride the Leadville 100 after retiring, and discovers that nothing had prepared him for what he faced.

Lance rides again, taking part in a Costa Rican mountain bike race despite a lifetime cycling ban; the race is held outside of UCI and WADA jurisdiction, which allows him to compete.

The newly crowned women’s masters track cycling champ defends her victory, saying it’s okay for trans women to compete — and win — in women’s sports.

 

Finally…

A man writing as a woman offers advice on how she’s more comfortable riding men’s bikes instead of women’s, which makes sense since she evidently isn’t one. Zwift goes virtually cycling in a virtually scary Halloween world.

And Taipei’s mayor is one of us, and he raps.

More or less.

Morning Links: Catching up on road raging drivers, e-scooters news, older bicyclists and self-driving cars

We’ve got a lot to catch up on this morning. 

So pour yourself a big cuppa joe, settle in for awhile, and let’s get right to it. 

Photo by Kevin Menajang via Pexels.com

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

A road raging British driver got two years for punching a bike rider who had the audacity to complain about a too-close pass, knocking him into the path of oncoming traffic.

Caught on video: A road raging Aussie driver slammed the side of his SUV into a bike rider, knocking him off the roadway, then got out of his car and tossed the victim’s bike into the bushes.

It also goes the other way. A Portland man claims that after he cut off a bike rider while pulling into a parking garage, the road raging rider tracked him down, went to his home and slashed all his car’s tires, leaving a note on his windshield reading, “You were so easy to find, Mark. You should drive more carefully.” A commenter says that’s more evidence that entitled cyclists are real, and not helpful.

………

Once again, e-scooters are in the news.

The LA Times gets it, with an even-handed editorial saying e-scooters could be an invaluable addition to the transportation system, but providers need to do so in a safe and responsible manner.

A New Zealand newspaper says let’s not be too quick to slap regulations on e-scooters.

And Peter Flax writes that instead of seeing e-scooter riders as the enemy, bike riders should welcome them as allies in the fight for safer streets.

………

Speaking of Flax, he hit the trifecta in today’s news, with a second piece noting that painted bike lanes offer little physical protection — and virtually no legal protection. I’ve long argued that bike riders should enjoy the same unquestioned right-of-way in bike lanes that pedestrians are supposed to enjoy in crosswalks, but too often don’t.

And finishing out today’s Peter Flax news, an Akron OH columnist takes offense at a bike rider from Los Angeles — or anywhere else — poking his nose in the city’s business, even if it’s to defend the concept of road diets from someone who doesn’t quite seem to get it.

………

I want to be like them when I grow up.

An 85-year old bike rider remains a pillar of the Waco TX bicycling community, after nearly 30 national championships and several state and world titles.

The incomparable French cyclist Robert Marchand came out of retirement to take a lap on the country’s national velodrome at the ripe old age of 106.

………

Then there are the driverless vehicles of our near future, which should be an improvement on the distracted driver ones we currently have.

Or maybe not.

A Berkeley-based urban planner says self-driving cars ain’t gonna solve our transportation problems.

And a team from MIT crowdsources the tough question of who self-driving cars should kill; you may not want to be an old criminal in the autonomous future. Or a cat.

………

No bias here. A writer for the Sacramento Business Journal apparently thinks he’s writing a witty little satiric piece on how to be a successful Sacramento pedestrian.

See if you can find even a modicum of wit here, because I certainly can’t.

2. See if you can intimidate someone riding one of those ubiquitous arrest-me-red bicycles into either running into you or sloppily avoiding you, thereby wobbling out of the designated bike lane and into the path of a car.

You see, bicyclists don’t believe they’re on a two-wheeled deathtrap, which, if it collided with a German shepherd, would see the dog emerge triumphant (though not happy about it). Instead, bicyclists believe they’re pedaling in a bubble, a challenge even to fans of physics. They believe they can control their scrawny vehicle, not knowing that lithe pedestrians can usually flee the scene of an accident more easily than bicyclists can — unless the bicyclists are more motivated than the pedestrian to do so, possibly due to their having a record of DUI arrests, which also would account for why they’re riding bicycles, not driving their recently totaled automobiles.

 

All I see is someone who doesn’t seem to understand what he’s writing about, and apparently doesn’t care enough to ask anyone.

………

Megan Lynch forwards a reminder that there are many kinds of distracted driving. Some cuter than others.

………

Local

Los Angeles Magazine explains the meaning of every proposition on the November 6th ballot.

Los Angeles Walks invites you to honor the victims of traffic violence at the LA observance of the International World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims on Sunday, November 18th at Los Angeles State Historic Park.

LA is still trying to deal with the problem of cut-through traffic caused by Waze, which road diets and bike lanes unfairly get blamed.

Nice story from Long Beach, where bighearted police dispatchers pitched in to buy a new bike for a 14-year old boy after his was stolen.

The rebuilt Broadway corridor Complete Streets project in Long Beach should be finished by the end of the year.

 

State

The Orange County Transportation Authority has received a $75,000 grant to provide bicycle-skills training and bike and pedestrian safety.

A Redlands paper looks at the projects which would be lost if Prop 6 passes and the gas tax increase is repealed.

Over 200 bike riders turned out for the annual Victor Valley Bicycle Tour.

Sad news from Santa Clara, where a 49-year old man was killed when he was right-hooked by a bus driver while riding in a bike lane.

In a pilot project, San Francisco will install a new protected bike lane on dangerous Valencia Street next year, as quickly as possible using existing materials; the idea is to speed up implementation of Vision Zero projects. On the other hand, new protected bike lanes on the Embarcadero appear to be on the slow track.

San Francisco Streetsblog offers a roundup of what Bay Area advocacy groups have to say on Props 6 and 10, as well as local propositions.

Bike riders in San Francisco’s famed Castro District donned high heels and wigs to protest Prop 6, along with a congressional candidate’s comments that “people would be forced to bike and take trains, and that wouldn’t work for her because of her ‘hair and heels.'”

Sad news from Pittsburgh, where a bike rider was killed in a collision on Friday.

A local paper offers a survival guide to biking in not-so-bike-friendly Santa Rosa. Meanwhile, a Santa Rosa writer says yes, bicyclists pay their own way.

 

National

People for Bikes has developed free tools to help calculate the economic benefits of bicycling to communities.

A former bike racer writes about the relatively new, mostly urban phenomenon of rideout culture, in which teenage bike riders swarm the streets, while performing stunts and darting in and out of traffic — a practice guaranteed to leave drivers and city officials frightened and apoplectic.

A new device raising funds on Indiegogo promises to end bike theft by installing a GPS tracker on your bike to alert you if anyone moves it.

Portland community members investigate a bike chop shop in a homeless camp, and discover a young girl’s bike that was registered with Bike Index.

UPS is testing out cargo ebikes for deliveries in Seattle, with the help of the University of Washington.

The LA Times says now that it’s cooled off, the new bikeshare system in Las Vegas is the perfect way to see the city.

North Texas bike riders give up on the Dallas area’s congested streets, and turn their hopes to an unbuilt network of offroad bike trails.

A grieving mother biked the entire length of the Mississippi River to honor her 22-year old son, who drowned there.

That’s one way to get attention. After an Indianapolis bike rider was seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver, he somehow managed to make it up to the governor’s mansion get get help.

DC promises to double the amount protected bike lanes in city over the next six years by building another ten miles of protected lanes — which works out to a measly 1.67 miles per year.

A Navy pilot in Virginia used his bike to overcome the depression that that nearly claimed his life.

Atlanta plans to stitch a network of old freight rail lines into a 22-mile walking, cycling and light rail beltway surrounding the central city.

Bicycles are changing the way people in New Orleans get around, as the city has worked to build out an effective bike network. Seriously, if they can boost bicycling in New Orleans, with its high heat, bugs and humidity, just imagine what we could do with LA’s much gentler climate.

 

International

A “lifelong, avid cyclist” says the new bike lanes in Victoria, British Columbia are nothing more than an expensive vanity project that inconveniences motorists, while sitting empty most of the day. Pretty much like most streets, which are packed at rush hour, and far overbuilt the rest of the day.

A Canadian man who’s losing his vision due to a progressive eye disease turns to bicycling to stay mobile and keep in shape.

Treehugger’s Lloyd Alter says what we really need is safe infrastructure, not a bunch of bike helmet scolds.

Life is cheap in Toronto, where an Uber driver faces a maximum $2,000 fine in the death of a bike rider.

London continues to show the US how it’s done, with plans to pedestrianize half the streets in the historic city core, while reducing speeds to 15 mph and expanding protected bike lanes and the city’s cycle superhighways.

A smile-inducing London-based pedicab company is attempting to crowdfund the equivalent of nearly $200,000 to expand their ped-assist taxi service throughout the city.

A Welsh website considers the bizarre death of bicyclist and MI-6 spy Gareth Williams, whose death was originally ruled an accident — even though his naked body was found padlocked inside a suitcase.

Bike riding is going upscale in India.

Here’s your guide to riding a bike on your next trip to the United Arab Emirates — including a spin around the Abu Dhabi F1 track. Making race car noises while you ride is optional.

Three Kenyan students have developed a solar powered, all-wheel drive, all terrain ebike that can also produce enough energy to power a home for three days.

And you thought your potholes were bad. A Kathmandu bike rider was killed when his bike fell through an open manhole cover.

This is who we share the roads with. A New Zealand driver plows through a family of ducks crossing the road, despite the best efforts of a bystander to protect them. The video is graphic, heartbreaking and sickening, so be advised before you decide to click on the link.

The ancient Vietnamese city of Hội An is planning to increase the number of non-motor vehicle zones, and boost bicycling for both locals and tourists.

 

Competitive Cycling

Next year’s Tour de France route has been officially unveiled; Chris Froome, Mark Cavendish and Geraint Thomas kind of like it, especially the climbs.

Elite cyclist Evelyn Sifton discusses finding acceptance in fixed gear racing after coming out as trans.

 

Finally…

Next time you encounter a polite driver, give ’em a big palm smile. When you have 4,999 bike riders, and still can’t get in the Guinness book.

And bikes are perfect for the coming zombie apocalypse and other disasters, natural and otherwise.

 

Morning Links: Uber scoots into Hollywood, anachronistic bikes, and Nov. closure of San Gabriel River path

So this happened yesterday.

Uber has apparently made the long migration east from their new Santa Monica base to the wilds of Hollywood.

Or maybe someone just took a long ride and left one here on the sidewalk near my home.

The tag on the e-scooter, which you can read by clicking the photo below, promises up to five free one-half hour rides per day through October 28th using the Uber app.

Hopefully, if the Uber scooters really have finally made their long-promised entry into the LA scooter wars, that means Uber’s popular JUMP ebike bikeshare will soon follow.

………

Last Friday, we mentioned the frozen antique bicycle which had unexpectedly emerged from the snowy slopes of the Italian Alps. Not far from where Ötzi, the 5,000-year old frozen caveman, had emerged from his own glacial grave in 1991.

Leading to the obvious and inescapable conclusion that it might be his bike.

If obvious and inescapable can be read to mean ludicrous and anachronistic.

Yet Marvin Davis has forwarded proof, of a sort, that it may be possible after all.

Which leads us to today’s discovery of what happens when you abbreviate the year in a multi-day Google Search.

Only to discover the odd fact that not one story about bicycles was published online on Tuesday or Wednesday’s date in 18 AD.

Go figure.

………

Long Beach Mobility & Healthy Living Programs Officer Michelle Mowery sends word of yet another one-day closure of the San Gabriel River Bike Path next month.

The path will be closed from 8 am to 5 pm on Wednesday, November 14th between 2nd Street and 7th Street (California State Highway 22) for additional work by the LA Department of Public Works.

So mark your calendar, and plan on another route that day.

………

No bias here.

An indignorant writer for a Kiwi website complains about the “massive amounts of taxpayer and ratepayer money” to give supposedly freeloading bike riders “an advantage over motorists who have to pay their own way in life.”

Don’t get me wrong, recreational cycling on purpose-built cycleways, especially out in the country, is an admirable pursuit, but cycling is not a practical means of transport, and the amount of other people’s money thrown at cycling infrastructure is totally disproportionate to the number of cyclists using it.

If the cost of cycleways and special cycle lanes was reflected in a tax on new bicycles each one would cost its purchaser at least $50,000.

Never mind that the total cost of a painted bike lane runs around $50,000 a mile in the US. So evidently, he’s assuming that every bike lane will be used by just one person per mile.

Period.

He goes on to complain about a planned walkway over the Aukland harbor, insisting it will become a death trap for people on foot as spandex-clad bike riders hit speeds of 55 mph on the downhill slope.

Because that’s just what we all do.

………

Local

Santa Monica Mountains Cyclery shares a photo of a bike thief who made off with a bike from a Norwalk shop.

 

State

San Francisco bike riders will be wearing wigs and sensible heels this weekend to protest Prop 6. And those are just the men, including State Sen. Scott Wiener.

Modesto is planning a new road diet to calm traffic on one of the city’s most dangerous streets; previous road diets have actually improved traffic flow for drivers. Which is probably why Modesto NIMBYs and traffic safety deniers aren’t rising up in revolt, unlike the privileged drivers in a certain SoCal city we could name.

 

National

Bicycling offers tips on how to dress for cold winter weather, including LA’s frigid 60° temps. And explains how riding a bike can give you a healthier gut.

Meanwhile, the great bike helmet debate goes on, as a writer for Bicycling says it’s okay to not wear a helmet, adding they can help protect against some injuries, but safer streets and drivers help more.

Good idea. A Colorado Springs CO advocacy group is offering classes for people who want to learn how to drive safely around bike riders.

An Estes Park writer suggests bicycling as a practical solution to the Colorado tourist town’s chronic traffic and parking problems.

Anyone can ride across the country. A Texas man is riding in a heart shape through 13 states to show his love for the US, and see for himself how divided the country is.

A Louisville KY woman explains how mansplainers nearly made her quit bicycling, until she gave up on the trails and started riding in the local cemetery. Seriously, when it comes to advice, be a well, not a fountain; if people want advice, they’ll usually ask for it. Although someone should tell her that calling out “on your left” is a courtesy to help avoid confusion and crashes, even if some riders treat it like more of a command. 

Still more from Bicycling, as they explain how a sub-seven-mile Memphis bike lane helped transform the city, which preceded Los Angeles as a two-time loser as America’s worst city for bicycling. So maybe there’s hope for us yet.

A Pittsburgh website profiles a paraplegic rockstar, author and record-setting handcyclist.

At a time when it seems like no one is behind the wheel in Washington, it could soon be literally true.

DC will try slow zones and banning right turns at some red lights to improve safety, as the mayor attempts to reset the city’s Vision Zero; traffic deaths have already exceeded the total for all of last year.

 

International

An automotive website considers when carmakers make bikes. I’ll take the Pashley Morgan, thank you.

Seriously, don’t be that guy. A bike raging London bicyclist caused nearly $2,000 in damage by slamming his bike onto the hood of a chauffeured limo. No matter what a driver might have done, violence is never the answer, tempting though it may be.

No bias here, either. A British radio host takes London’s DOT-equivalent to task for not implementing a harebrained plan to let drivers use one of the city’s cycle superhighways at non-peak hours. It should come as no surprise that his last name is Ferrari.

An English town saw a 200% increase in bicycling after they banned cars from the city center.

The war on cars may be a myth, but but the war on bikes goes on. An Irish farmer was convicted of pushing two men off their bikes, complaining they were passing too close to where he was walking.

NPR considers how a disastrous change in service providers nearly killed the famed Paris Vélib’ bikeshare.

A new Danish study shows bicycling in your 50s and 60s can cut your risk of early death by 23%. Then again, any death before you’re ready is early.

Switch to biking, walking or taking transit in Bologna, Italy and the city will buy you a beer. Which is why this site may soon be called BikinginBologna.

An advocacy group in Malta is urging employers to fight traffic by buying bicycles for their workers — then taking it out of their salaries.

I want to be like him when I grow up. A 71-year old Indian man is on his seventh ride around the world.

An Israeli professional soccer player has been indicted for the drunken hit-and-run that killed an ebike rider.

An Aussie woman is furious that she got stuck behind a group of bicyclists for awhile, complaining that they didn’t move over to let her pass. Never mind that the lane was clearly to narrow to safely share.

A Kiwi writer describes a rainy bike commute to work, which she started doing when her car’s radiator blew up six years ago. And says if someone offered her a new car today, she wouldn’t take it.

He gets it. A New Zealand writer says don’t panic, they’re only scooters.

Brisbane, Australia bike advocates call for a connected bikeway grid in the central business district after bike riders identify a mere 2,850 traffic safety problem areas.

Heartbreaking story from Thailand, where a Philippine randonneur was killed by a hit-and-run driver who ran a red light, just 31 miles from the end of a 1,250-mile race.

A short German-made film examines how Beijing is turning back to bicycles in an attempt to ease traffic and smog in the city of 21 million.

 

Competitive Cycling

Former US Postal team director Johan Bruyneel, who helped Lance win — and lose — a record-setting seven Tour de France titles, has received a well-deserved lifetime ban from cycling.

America’s other ex-Tour de France winner and current CBD peddler says cycling’s post-doping era ain’t so clean, either.

Cycling Tips says the pro cycling calendar is bloated and anti-climactic.

Good news, as 21-year old Californian former pro cyclist Adrien Costa is back on his bike, just three months after losing a leg in a Mono County climbing accident.

 

Finally…

How to not mispronounce common bike brands. Just what every bicyclist needs — $200 cherry red vinyl bike shorts with a bejeweled buckle.

And proof not all distracted drivers are drivers. Even if it was probably staged.

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